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Reflective Essays

Vol. 23 No. 3: Special Issue: A Global Perspective on Service-Learning and Community Engagement in Higher Education

The State of Service-Learning in Australia

December 19, 2019


This article provides an overview of the present status of service-learning in Australia. It explores the evidence for service-learning in Australia through published literature and a desktop audit that identified service-learning units/courses publicly available on university websites. Authorship of the article has provided a wider perspective to ensure the accuracy of its substance and conclusions. Service-learning is a relatively new curriculum approach in Australia in all but small pockets within universities and in faith-based institutions. However, in recent years, interest in civic learning outcomes for students has been behind efforts to include it more broadly in higher education approaches to engendering citizenship and social awareness as well as to expand the range of approaches to work-integrated learning. To capture this growing interest, an Australian service-learning network and summit is planned for November 2019.